Charlotte searching for a tree warden

If you have a background in working with trees and arborist’s ardor, the Charlotte Selectboard wants to talk to you.

After all three tree wardens resigned in the wake of controversy over the planting of trees along State Park Road, the town now has no tree warden and board members are anxious to fill the position.

There are no required qualifications for a tree warden in state statutes, but the duties of the position are outlined, according to the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation.

At the April 22 selectboard meeting, former tree warden Mark Dillenbeck recommended the town look for someone who’s got a professional background as an arborist, forester, landscaper or at least “an enthusiastic amateur with a track record of doing work with trees.”

Dillenbeck also hopes the eventual tree warden will be interested in maintaining the Hamilton Champion Tree Roster a list of the town’s largest trees by species.

The selectboard will be promoting its search for a volunteer tree warden on social media and possibly in print in hopes of interviewing candidates in four weeks.

Board member Frank Tenney said there are duties for a tree warden in Charlotte that are more extensive than the duties outlined in state statutes. For example, tree removal on Thompson’s Point needs a tree warden’s approval in Charlotte.

The need to fill the position is pressing because there are some requests for removing trees on Thompson’s Point that are overhanging camps and might be dead.

Of less urgency is continuing to work on the Shade Tree Preservation Plan.

Of semi-urgency, Dillebeck said, is the eagerness of the trail committee and some landowners with property next to town trails who want some trees planted along trails for screening their property.

The board asked town administrator Nate Bareham to check whether the requests for tree removals on Thompson’s Point were serious enough that they couldn’t wait until the end of May when the board hopes to have a tree warden in place.

Bareham said he was working on an application for people who would like to use money from the Rutter Tree Fund for planting on their property

Chair Jim Faulkner gave a shoutout to the Rutter Tree Fund for providing trees that were planted at the town garage and for supplying tree watering buckets that had showed up that day, the Monday of the selectboard meeting, just as the trees were ready for watering.

Eight more arborvitaes or evergreen trees are required by the plan for the town garage that was approved by the development review board. Faulkner said it was important to get those planted soon because it would be best to have them in before grass is planted.

Road commissioner Junior Lewis said he had money in his budget that’s actually allocated for killing trees or brush, but he didn’t see any problem for redirecting it to buying trees to grow.

“I don’t think anybody in town would be against it, seeing it’s a town building. We do have a plan and that should be completed,” Lewis said. He is willing to take the blame if anyone objects.

Lewis is ready to complete the landscaping plan and pull up the erosion netting that was put down in the fall.